Thursday 19 July, 2018
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Crazy liar! Farinas torches Sereno for claiming House blackmailed SC to force her ouster

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Majority Leader Rodolfo Fariñas on Tuesday described as “cunningly crazy” the allegation of ousted Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno that the House of Representatives “held hostage” the judiciary’s budget unless the Supreme Court would cooperate in removing her from office.

“The statement of Atty. Maria Lourdes Sereno sounds cunningly crazy even from her!” Fariñas said in a message to reporters, noting that Sereno’s statement is quadruple hearsay.

In her speech in Quezon City, Sereno said SC spokesperson Theodore Te told her that Fariñas had told Justice Diosdado Peralta that Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez ‘had ordered the suspension of the deliberations of the budget of the judiciary until the Supreme Court released all the documents the complainant requested.”

Sereno said the House was in the midst of budget hearings when lawyer Larry Gadon filed the impeachment complaint against her.

“She is alleging that Speaker Alvarez told Fariñas who told Peralta who told Te who then told Sereno about the said crazy statement,” Fariñas said.

Fariñas also said the SC resolution authorizing its justices and officials to testify in the impeachment hearings, as well as release of the documents Gadon requested was unanimously approved by the SC en banc.

“That is, all 14 justices of the Supreme Court (except her, of course, as she did not participate) cited in favor of the said resolution. Even the highly respected, bar topnotcher and already then retired SC Justice Arturo Brion voluntarily testified in the said hearings,” Fariñas said.

Fariñas further detailed the timeline of the budget deliberations in comparison to the impeachment proceedings to “show her propensity for falsehood.”

The proposed budget of the Supreme Court was approved at the committee level on Aug. 7, 2017.

It was approved in an hour on plenary on Sept. 6, 2017, with only Minority Leader Danilo Suarez making an interpellation.

HB 6215, the proposed General Appropriations Act, was approved on second reading on Sept. 12, 2017, and on third reading on Sept. 26, 2017.

Fariñas said the 15 impeachment hearings by the Justice Committee were conducted on Nov. 22, 2017 to Feb. 27, 2018, long after the HOR approved the budget on third reading on Sept. 26, 2017. (PNA)

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